Mount Royal University
Calgary, Alberta, Canada
October 10-13, 2012
Building on the success of Under Western Skies: Climate, Culture, and Change in Western North America in October 2010, Under Western Skies 2 welcomes academics from across the disciplines as well as members of artistic and activist communities, non- and for-profit organizations, government, labour, and NGOs to address the environmental challenges faced by human and nonhuman actors across North America.
UWS 2 will take place on Mount Royal University campus in the LEED Gold-certified Roderick Mah Centre for Continuous Learning.
Confirmed keynote speakers include:
--environmental historian Donald Worster (University of Kansas; author of Under Western Skies [OUP, 1982]);
--2011 Gemini Award-winning filmmaker and Arctic anthropologist Niobe Thompson (Clearwater Media, Edmonton, AB; co-director Tipping Point: The Age of the Oilsands);
--award-winning Canadian poet Skydancer Louise Halfe (Saskatoon, Saskatchewan);
--climatologist Scott Denning (Colorado State University);
--environmental journalist Alanna Mitchell (Sea Sick: The Global Ocean in Crisis);
--ethnobotanist Gary Paul Nabhan (University of Arizona).
With its mandate for both interdisciplinarity and community outreach, UWS 2 broadens the geographical scope of the inaugural conference but retains its wide call for contributions from all environmental fields of inquiry and endeavor, including the humanities, natural and social sciences, North American studies, public policy, business, and law. Artistic, creative, and non-academic proposals are also welcome. Possible directions may include, but are not limited to
agriculture, food, and food security
alpine and glacial change
animal rights and commodification
borders and transnational issues
collaboration between scientific and non-scientific communities
continental "perimeter security"
direct action and activism
ecology or nature?
environmental catastrophe and community
environmental devastation as neo-colonialism
environmental racism and justice
feedlots and runoff
forests and forestry
the Great Lakes
human and nonhuman migration
indigenous environmental kinship
indigenous land, air, and water rights
indigenous worldviews and sovereignties
interdisciplinarity and transdisciplinarity
the Keystone Pipeline and continental integration
law and public policy in North America
literary, filmic, and new media representations
national and regional parks
new continental weather patterns
North American bioregions
North American nuclear culture and power after Fukushima
North American studies
the politics of meat
resilient communities and solidarity
restoration, reclamation, reparation
the rights of nature
seeds and seed patents
senses of place
technology as social construction
tourism and amenity migration
water rights, watersheds, and river systems
the "wilding" of North American cities like Detroit
wildlife and animality
women's, gender and/or sexuality studies
youth, education, and activism
A selection of papers will go forward for an edited book publication or special journal issue following UWS 2. (The collection of edited papers stemming from UWS 2010 is forthcoming from Wilfrid Laurier University Press as a part of its Environmental Humanities Series.)
Proposals should run no more than 250 words in length and be attached to an email as a .doc or .docx file. Proposals for readings, panels, screenings, displays, and workshops are also welcome.
Direct all proposals, together with brief bio and contact information, to Dr. Robert Boschman at and to Dr. Mario Trono at .
Check for regular updates regarding UWS 2 at the conference website: .
Closing Date: Monday, January 23, 2012